First I would like to thank Clayton Brown and Brown Brothers Construction for their great work on deepening the Castle Rock Cut. Clayton was always willing to take time to talk and keep me updated on the project. He jumped off the cat any time I came walking along the ridge. We also talked about fishing but this is about the deepening project. He is a big guy but the heavy equipment they use is much bigger.
BBC moved over 300,000 cubic yards of material from the Cut and layered it smoothly on the north side near Castle Rock. After the lake floods the land this year the material will look just like lake bottom and undistrubed rocky soil as seen everywhere else on Lake Powell.
This picture looks west towards Wahweap Bay. Lake elevation is 3577 on April 28, 2014. The Cut is 3 feet above lake level.
The bottom is flat having been meticulously graded after the material was moved.
The Cut is about 1 mile long and 150 feet wide which will allow two houseboats to safely pass each other. Here the last truck ramp is being removed before taking the equipment out of the Cut.
Here is the Cut looking toward Warm Creek.
The Warm Creek end is very shallow so the lake will have to come up 8 feet from this point so boats can navigate Warm Creek as well as the Cut.
Picutres from the beginning of the project are found below.
Aerial View - Pictures from Bill Zeglin - April 4, 2014
Pictorial update of the deepening - Pictures from March 26, 2014
Brown Bros. Construction is doing a great job of deepening the Castle Rock Cut. It is a huge project to remove so much fill from the Cut. Here is a view from Wahweap looking east to the main construction in the middle of the Cut.
Its a long walk to get from the Wahweap shoreline to the construction deepening in the middle of the Cut. There is a coffer dam protecting the construction from rising water.
The construction equipment is huge but looks small in the deep canyon. What looks like smoke is actually rock being scraped by the blade.
The loaders and dump trucks take a hybrid car sized scoop and fill the huge dump truck in 7 scoops which takes about 2 minutes.
Here is a good perspective on the depth of the Cut .
According to the crew they have deepened the Cut about half way. The expect to finish near the end of April. Here is the view to the East toward Warm Creek.
After another hike I can see Warm Creek.
And finallly looking back toward Wahweap.
There is a lot of fill to be moved from the shallow zones on each end that was once under water when the Cut was usable at Elevation 3600. The new Cut will be deepened to 3580 which should make it usable for a long time into the future with normal annual runoff.